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Economy in Brief

Initial Claims For Jobless Insurance Remained Low
by Tom Moeller July 28, 2005

Initial claims for unemployment insurance did rise 5,000 to 310,000 last week but the increase hardly dented the 32,000 decline the week previous which was little revised. Consensus expectations had been for an increase to 320,000 claims.

During the last ten years there has been a (negative) 75% correlation between the level of initial claims for unemployment insurance and the monthly change in payroll employment. There has been a (negative) 65% correlation with the level of continuing claims.

The four week moving average of initial claims fell slightly to 318,250 (-5.7% y/y), the lowest level since early March.

Continuing claims for unemployment insurance rose 32,000 after a 46,000 decline the week earlier which was deeper than initially indicated.

The insured unemployment rate remained at the four year low of 2.0%.

The latest Beige Book from the Federal Reserve Board can be found here.

Unemployment Insurance (000s) 07/23/05 07/16/05 Y/Y 2004 2003 2002
Initial Claims 310 305 -8.8% 343 402 404
Continuing Claims -- 2,603 -11.1% 2,926 3,531 3,570
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